The Total Package (Stephanie Evanovich)

thetotalpackage

Star quarterback, first-round draft-pick, and heartthrob Tyson Palmer has made a name for himself with his spectacular moves. When the head coach of the Austin Mavericks refuses to let him waste his million-dollar arm, Tyson makes a Hail Mary pass at redemption and succeeds with everyone . . . except Dani, whose negative comments about his performance draw high ratings and spectacular notices of her own.

Dani can’t forgive Tyson’s transgressions or forget the sizzling history the two of them shared in college, a passionate love Tyson casually threw away. And even more infuriating, he doesn’t realize that the bombshell with huge ratings is the cute girl whose heart he once broke. 

But can a woman trying to claw her way to the top and a quarterback who knows all about rock bottom make it to the Super Bowl without destroying each other? And what will happen when Tyson—riding high now that he’s revived his career—realizes he needs to make an even more important comeback with Dani? Can he make some spectacular moves to get past her defenses—or will she sideline him for good?


I usually love sports romances, but I have to admit that this one just wasn’t for me.

First of all I had some problems with the writing. This book is written in omniscient third person and while it was fun to read for some chapters, it became confusing and not very enticing later on.

In the first chapter we see Tyson and Dani hookup, after she had tutored him a few years back. Tyson was a terrible point of his life, an addict, about to lose his job and with a lot of scandals surrounding him. Somehow, Dani believes she can fix him, so she decides to sleep with him, in hopes that from just that, he’ll turn his life around. Obviously things don’t turn out that way, at all.

The book then follows Tyson road to sobriety, which was quite interesting to read, but utterly slow and it provided nothing to the romance development. We spend the first third of the book learning how deep Tyson has fallen and how he has risen… rehab, training, eating, making friends… it’s a kind of boring exposition his day to day life for a few months. Then he get’s back to the team and the book jumps ahead 4 years. I was ok with the time jump, but all that came before should have been shortened.

When the time jumps, we finally get another look at Dani. Well, let’s just say that her hookup over 4 years before had consequences, and while building her reporting career – which she does because she somehow wants to get near Tyson, she got mad at him because Tyson didn’t recognized her and accidentally uttered some words of animosity towards him. When they end up working on the same place, it’s clear that she’s still has feelings for the guy, and they end up becoming close in the process…

As I said, I had a lot of problems with this one. Apart from the writing style, which irked me at times, the dialog, especially between Dani and Tyson, was cringeworthy. I mean, who says “I could love you” after not seeing someone for years?

Then there’s the characters… while I appreciated Tyson, I couldn’t bring myself to like Dani. This is a girl who at 19 decided she was in love with a guy, which is ok, but almost 10 years later, and without that much contact, she was still very much in love with him. Then she did something that is on my “shit” list, and while I understood it at first, I couldn’t stand it after they got closer again.

Ultimately the pacing was off, the writing style was not my favorite and the main couple lacked something… and said the most weird things to each other… I didn’t love it, but it’s not that it’s bad, you know? Just OK…

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18 thoughts on “The Total Package (Stephanie Evanovich)

  1. Cátia says:

    So she tought that sex could change him?? Why do girls keep thinking that they could change a guy?? That normaly doesn’t end up that well. Also, she «loved» him even if she didn’t saw him for 10 years?? I can’t see why you didn’t like her

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